PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER)-- The Maine Chinchilla Shelter, located in Augusta, Maine, is dedicated to rescuing chinchillas from neglectful, unhealthy environments and hoarding situations and restoring their health before finding them loving, attentive forever homes.

Director and operator of the Maine Chinchilla Shelter, Marianne Sansouci, says the most common misconception about chinchillas is that they are native to hot desert regions. However, they are actually indigenous to cold, dry, mountainous areas and require a similar climate in a home in order to thrive. Sansouci says air conditioning is a must if you want to own a chinchilla. The furry animals also do well in small spaces, and make great apartment pets.

When you bond with a chinchilla, he or she will sit happily in your lap, hand, or on your shoulder and takes treats from your hands. If you want to learn more about chinchillas and/or are interested in adopting one, visit the Maine Chinchilla Shelter to learn more.